SOUTHERN PINES, N.C. (AP) _ First Bancorp (FBNC) on Tuesday reported second-quarter earnings of $22.7 million.

The Southern Pines, North Carolina-based bank said it had earnings of 77 cents per share.

The results beat Wall Street expectations. The average estimate of three analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research was for earnings of 71 cents per share.

The bank holding company for First Bank posted revenue of $72.8 million in the period. Its revenue net of interest expense was $67.3 million, which fell short of Street forecasts. Three analysts surveyed by Zacks expected $68.2 million.

First Bancorp shares have climbed 17 percent since the beginning of the year. In the final minutes of trading on Tuesday, shares hit $41.47, a climb of 33 percent in the last 12 months.


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